"Pandor Visits Mpumalanga Schools to Promote Local Languages" (South Africa)

Don Osborn dzo at bisharat.net
Thu Apr 19 14:16:41 UTC 2007

The following item from the South African press agency, Bua News, was seen
on AllAfrica.com at http://allafrica.com/stories/200703191311.html .  Don

South Africa: Pandor Visits Mpumalanga Schools to Promote Local Languages
BuaNews (Tshwane)
March 19, 2007
Posted to the web March 19, 2007

Kulani Mavunda

Education minister Naledi Pandor will visit Mpumalanga this week to promote
the use of indigenous languages in schools.

She will attend a two-day conference on Friday and Saturday organised by the
provincial education department under the theme: "Consolidating the role of
Indigenous Languages in Education."

"We (want to identify) means and systems that must be put in place to
promote the use and learning of indigenous languages in this province," said
provincial department spokesman Hlahla Ngwenya on Monday.

Delegates will discuss indigenous language development from a South African
perspective, challenges faced by those who speak indigenous languages,
language and literacy development, lessons from other countries and the
promotion of indigenous languages as school subjects.

"The intention is to give practical impetus to government's efforts to
provide for the recognition, implementation and furtherance of
multilingualism in the country," said Mr Ngwenya.

"All languages must enjoy the same status and educators must ensure that
they are treated accordingly."

Speaking during the language policy implementation in higher education
institutions conference in Pretoria last year, Minister Pandor said the
Constitution gave all languages equal status.

The Constitution states that, "everyone has the right to receive education
in the official language or languages of their choice in public educational
institutions where that education is reasonably practicable". (Section 29(2)
of the Constitution)

"The promotion of indigenous languages must be understood in context, as it
has no intention to undermine or threaten the existence of other languages,"
Mr Ngwenya explained.

"It is an attempt to ensure that all languages are promoted and allowed to
thrive side by side."

Speakers at the conference will include a delegate from the Zambian
education ministry, provincial education MEC Siphosezwe Masango, and a
representative of the Pan South African Language Board.

Copyright C 2007 BuaNews. All rights reserved. 

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